Delaware man accused in murder, rape of 70-year-old woman

State police say the suspect in the rape and murder of a Millsboro woman was a registered Tier II sex offender. 

Police arrested 43-year-old Michael Purnell of Millsboro Wednesday, charging him with murder, rape and burglary.  They say he killed 70-year-old Dorothy Gudger, whose body was found in her home by neighbors who were concerned because they hadn’t seen her in a few days.  

Police say Purnell had been doing odd jobs for the victim at her home in recent days.  Police are still waiting for results from the Medical Examiner to determine the manner and cause of death.

Purnell is now being held without bail at the Sussex County Correctional Institution. 

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